Russia's Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev (R) and China's Prime Minister Li Keqiang shakes hands during a signing ceremony in Moscow on October 13, 2014. AFP PHOTO/RIA-NOVOSTI/POOL/EKATERINA SHTUKINA
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Russia and China signed energy, trade and finance agreements Monday, proclaimed by Moscow as proof that a policy turn to Asia is bearing fruit and will help it to weather Western sanctions over the Ukraine crisis. The 38 deals, signed on a visit to Moscow by Premier Li Keqiang, allow for deeper cooperation on energy and a currency swap worth 150 billion yuan ($25 billion) intended partly to reduce the sway of the U.S. dollar.The currency swap strengthens China's plans to promote international usage of the yuan, following pledges by Moscow and Beijing to settle more bilateral trade in rubles and yuan. Spurred by their often fraught relations with the United States, Russia and China have long advocated reducing the role of the dollar in international commerce.Medvedev said trade turnover between Russia and China had grown by more than 100 percent over the past six years, from $40 billion to $90 billion.
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